Anyone who has spent time in a hospital knows what a hospital bed looks like. They are unattractive, functional pieces of medical equipment. They have a job to do, and they do it well, but few people would want that sort of hospital bed in their home unless it were necessary. The good news is you don’t have to. You can instead choose an adjustable, easily controlled, and rugged bed with all the capabilities of a hospital bed that also looks great in your bedroom.
If you’re reading this article, the chances are you’re thinking of buying a hospital bed for the home, whether for yourself or a loved one. To help you out, let’s take a look at seven advantages of adjustable beds.
1. Flexible Sleeping Positions
The primary benefit of home hospital beds is their adjustability. They can be adjusted to provide a wide range of sleeping and sitting positions. A basic home hospital bed features a head adjustment to raise and lower the portion of the bed that supports your head and upper body.
The adjustment range means the bed can support you in positions from lying flat to sitting up. In addition to helping the bed’s occupant find a comfortable position, a head adjustment helps with various medical conditions, including back problems, heart and lung conditions, sleep apnea, and more.
More advanced home hospital beds, including Transfer Master’s Companion, feature a head and a foot adjustment. The foot adjustment elevates the feet and lower legs. Sleeping with elevated legs is recommended for people with circulatory problems, who suffer from edema, and who have an increased risk of pulmonary thrombosis, among others.
In addition to the head and foot adjustment, a home hospital bed may also have configurable height. These Hi-Low beds raise and lower to allow easy access, safe wheelchair transfers, and improved caregiving and treatment. A bed with head, foot, and hi-low adjustments is called a three-function home hospital bed, a category that includes our Supernal Hi-Low.
The most sophisticated beds are five-function home hospital beds, which include Transfer Master’s Supernal 5 and New Valiant models. In addition to the head, foot, and height adjustments, five-function home hospital beds include tilt adjustments, also known as Trendelenburg and Reverse Trendelenburg adjustments. These tilt the bed’s surface toward the head or foot. Trendelenburg positions are often recommended for people with heart and circulatory problems, respiratory issues, and who have undergone certain types of surgery.
2. Adjustable Height (Hi-Low Hospital Beds)
As we mentioned in the previous section, many hospital beds for the home feature an adjustable height. For example, Our Supernal 5 has a height range of 12″ to 24″. Height-adjustable beds provide many advantages, including:
- Safe wheelchair transfers—the bed’s surface should be the same height as the wheelchair’s seat, as we explained in How to Transfer a Patient From a Wheelchair to a Home Hospital Bed.
- Safe access for people with mobility issues and bodily weakness—getting into and out of bed is a common cause of dangerous falls. Positioning the bed at the correct height significantly reduces the likelihood of falls.
- Low-risk access for caregivers—reaching, twisting, and bending puts caregivers at risk of back injuries. An adjustable bed allows caregivers to provide care and treatment without risk.
Safety is a key concern when designing home hospital beds and mattresses. Every decision we make at Transfer Master is influenced by our commitment to enhancing our customer’s safety. Some of the ways a hospital bed increases health and safety for elderly, disabled, and bedbound people include:
- Reduced risk of falls when getting in and out of bed.
- Reduced risk of falling or rolling out of bed.
- Lying and sitting positions that aid recovery or prevent further injury.
- Protection from bed sores.
- Support when moving while in bed.
- Help to change position—including sitting up—without exertion.
A core safety benefit of a hospital bed in the home is the avoidance of hospital-associated health risks; the alternative to a hospital bed at home may be long-term residence in a care facility or hospital.
A standard, non-adjustable bed with a consumer-grade mattress is adequate for young and healthy people, but it is likely to prove uncomfortable and even harmful to people with a wide range of health conditions. A home hospital bed’s adjustments can account for the needs of people with back injuries, arthritis, circulatory disorders, edema (swelling) of the lower limbs, and many more.
Furthermore, hospital bed mattresses are engineered to distribute pressure and reduce the excess force on sensitive parts of the body, a capability that offers comfort improvements to people suffering from some types of chronic pain, disease, or degenerative conditions.
5. Independence and Aging in Place
Increasing numbers of older people choose to age in place and spend their retirement years in their own homes. However, as you get older, you can expect physical and cognitive challenges that make it difficult to live independently. For example, you may find getting into and out of bed harder. Sitting up after a night lying down may become more difficult, and standing up from a bed that is too high or low is a common cause of overexertion and falls.
A home hospital bed can help, allowing you to live independently in your home for longer. A motorized electric adjustable bed with a remote control—including all Transfer Master home hospital beds—can help you to sit up without exertion. A Hi-Low bed can be adjusted to the perfect height so that you can stand up easily and safely.
6. Wheelchair Accessibility
We called our company Transfer Master because our primary goal was to help wheelchair users safely transfer from their wheelchair to bed and back again. Our beds and mattresses have many features that aid safe wheelchair transfers, including:
- Height adjustments so the bed’s surface can be aligned with the wheelchair’s seat.
- Mattresses with stiffened border-edge protection to provide support for limbs and transfer boards.
- Optional bed rails that provide handholds and support for moving around the bed and transferring to a wheelchair.
- Remote-controlled adjustments make it easy for wheelchair users to configure the bed from their wheelchair or the bed itself.
7. Reduced Risk of Bedsores
Bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers and pressure sores, are a risk for anyone who spends long periods in bed. They also commonly affect people with physical and cognitive limitations that prevent regular voluntary repositioning. Home hospital beds and mattresses combat the formation of bedsores and help treat existing bedsores.
- The bed’s adjustments allow the occupant to be positioned and repositioned to limit the exposure of areas prone to bedsores to prolonged pressure and shear forces.
- Hospital bed mattresses distribute pressure evenly so that it is not as focused on vulnerable parts of the body, such as the elbows, hips, knees, and the base of the spine.
- Pressure-relief mattresses contribute to progressive wound healing for patients with existing bedsores. These mattresses feature adjustable air bladders that redistribute pressure and provide alternating pressure zones to aid the healing of pressure sores.
We’ve looked at just seven advantages of buying a high-quality American-made home hospital bed. To learn more, take a look at our Hi-Low hospital beds, adjustable beds for the elderly, and adjustable beds for couples. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact our friendly and knowledgeable sales team.